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IMF mission in Jordan to follow up on reforms, discuss future cooperation

By JT - Jun 16,2019 - Last updated at Jun 16,2019

AMMAN — International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission on Sunday started its visit to the Kingdom as part of efforts to support and follow up on the implementation of financial and structural reforms, according to the Finance Ministry.

In a statement carried by the Jordan News Agency, Petra, the ministry said that the visit came after the global lending institution concluded its second review of the national economy’s performance and issued its report.

The members of the mission are due to meet, during their visit, with Finance Minister Ezzeddine Kanakrieh, Planning Minister Mohamad Al-Ississ, Central Bank of Jordan (CBJ) Governor Ziad Fariz and other officials in relevant public departments.

Earlier this year, an IMF mission visited the Kingdom to conduct the second review of the national economy’s performance under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) and, after its completion of the review, it issued a statement concluding that its outlook “brings renewed momentum despite persistent challenges”.

The IMF mission is expected to discuss during the current visit the remaining reviews as well as future cooperation between the Kingdom and the fund.

Jordan and the IMF signed a 36-month, $700-million Extended Fund Facility (EFF) programme in 2016, under which the two sides agreed on six conditions that aim at reducing public debt to safe levels and stimulating the economy. 

The controversial Income Tax Law, which went into effect at the beginning of this year, is part of fiscal reforms under the programme and its endorsement was a necessary step for conducting the second review of the economy under the EFF programme.

Last month, the government said it is in discussions with the international lending institution to start a new programme for development purposes.

“We have requested signing a new programme with the IMF that will mainly focus on development. The new programme does not entail imposing new taxes or fees at all,” Minister of State for Media Affairs Jumana Ghunaimat said at the time.

The minister added that Jordan asked the IMF to extend the current EFF for six more months until a decision is reached regarding the new programme with the fund.

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